5 Reasons your Air Conditioner is Ineffective: Cary HVAC

Today is absolutely beautiful. In fact, for most of us, we don't really "need" our air conditioner. On 70 something degree days, where the humidity is low, you may find yourself forgetting about our North Carolina humidity. But let's not forget that we DO live in North Carolina and that these temperatures are a tease.  Within a week or so, the heat will return and if we're not paying attention, we may find that our air conditioner isn't able to do its job. Even at the end of our summer season, your air conditioner should still be removing humidity and keeping our homes cool. If your Cary HVAC isn't doing the job anymore, we've got a few ideas as to why. So with that in mind, let's discuss 5 reasons your air conditioner is ineffective.

Controlling Humidity More Important Due to COVID19

Now more than ever, it's important to control your humidity levels indoor due to COVID19. We're still learning a lot about the virus, but what we do know is that the virus thrives in both very high and very low humidity conditions. As such, it's important to keep your humidity level between 40-60 percent (if only we could keep those levels outside, right?).

That said, if your Cary HVAC is struggling to keep up in September, there are a few reasons why.

#1. Your Cary HVAC unit is too big

We recently discussed how to tell if your air conditioner is too big. If you haven't read that post, be sure to go back and give it a look. The main takeaway from that article is that bigger isn't always better. An oversized system may be able to cool a space faster, but the downside is that it likely won't be very effective at removing humidity.

Most builders won't intentionally install a system that is too large for a house, but it can happen. More often than not, our customers will make improvements to their houses that make a home more energy-efficient such as replacing old windows with new ones, adding solar panels, etc. These improvements can make it such that your current system becomes overkill for what you need it to do.

If you've recently made improvements to your home and now find that you're not able to achieve a comfortable temperature or humidity level inside your home, you may need to install a smaller capacity AC system to solve the problem. Give us Choice HVAC at 919-435-2711 and we can help you determine the appropriate size of your Cary HVAC using a load calculation process.

#2. Your Cary HVAC is limited to one speed

Most HVAC units have the ability to run either ON/OFF or in auto mode. Each setting can get to the same outcome; however, if your air conditioner is only able to run at one speed, it can produce the same problem as the above as it relates to controlling the humidity inside your home.

What happens when your Cary HVAC only runs at one speed is that the system runs at full blast until the air reaches the set temperature. Then it turns off and only goes on again if the temperature goes above the thermostat setting. As such, it never runs consistently enough to remove humidity and only focuses on the temperature. This is particularly true when the temperature isn't that high, but it's humid.

If this describes your situation, you may not be ready to replace your current system. However, you may want to invest in a dehumidifier to focus on the humidity aspect of the current conditions. When it is time to install a new Cary HVAC system, consider a modulating HVAC system such as a VRF system. These systems can run longer at a lower capacity which means it tends to do a better job of controlling humidity while cooling the space. They also tend to save you money on your energy bill, which never hurts.

#3: You Cary HVAC is producing negative air pressure

It's always possible that you've got a poorly designed ventilation system which is producing negative air pressure. What does this look like?

Have you ever been to a restaurant and been sitting kinda close to a door, and whenever anyone opened the door, a gust of wind entered the room. All the outside air was drawn in through a very little opening in the building. Same sort of concept, except in this case, when the humidity levels get into the 70's, 80's, 90's (you know, a normal NC summer/fall day), all that muggy air floods your home. If the opening is big enough, your Cary HVAC may not be able to keep up and any chance it had at keeping the humidity level under control will be compromised.

The only way to fix this problem is to modify your ventilation system. This is something else we can help you with should think this is the issue.

#4: Your Cary HVAC is using the wrong thermostat setting

Let's go back to our conversation about thermostat settings - you can run your system in ON/OFF mode or Auto, right? If you're running your thermostat in FAN ON mode, that fan is running continuously even if the temperature has been reached. While we also love the feeling of a fan blowing on a really hot day, the FAN ON setting can actually make humidity levels worse.

Simple fix - adjust your thermostat to AUTO.

#5: Your Cary HVAC system is old

Unfortunately, air conditioners were never meant to last forever. As such, as your system ages, parts will wear down and it may not perform as efficiently. While we're happy to come out whenever you give us a call, at some point you need to weigh out the cost/benefit of having us repair a system that is failing vs. investing your money into a new system.

Whatever the reason that your air conditioner is ineffective, call Choice HVAC at 919-435-2711. We can help you determine the problem and potentially save you hundreds or thousands of dollars in expensive repair or replacement costs.

 

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